Is Prince in or out?

The Karoo town of Beaufort West has dumped its controversial mayor, Truman Prince, after two of his party’s officials accused him of “hooliganism”.

Or maybe it hasn’t.

Prince is national chairperson of the Independent Civic Organisation of South Africa (Icosa) and a member of the National People’s Party (NPP), formed by disgraced Cape Town councillor Badih Chaaban. He became mayor for the third time six months ago with the NPP’s support.

This week, Icosa’s national organiser, Petrus Roodtman, and its deputy president, Jeffrey Donson, insisted Prince had been sacked because he “acted like a hooligan” and was a member of two political organisations.

Prince, a serial political bed-hopper who likens his struggles to those of United States president Abraham Lincoln, learned from Die Son on Tuesday that he is out of a job. He insists he has not been notified of his dismissal.

“Ag no man!” he guffawed from his mayoral office this week.
“It’s that fokken Donson who can’t think and who has been teaching without a diploma and Roodtman who stole money from the Eden district municipality who are the dying horses. Not me! I’m strong. With the mayoral chain around my neck, sitting lekker!”

Donson is a convicted rapist, while Roodtman has been suspended as a councillor after being accused of defrauding the Eden district of R57 000.

Until now, most of Icosa’s members have also belonged to the NPP, which accepted Prince as a member after he was expelled from the ANC last February.

But Roodtman and Donson said Icosa’s constitution has been changed to exclude dual membership, meaning Prince must stand down.

Prince has been mayor of Beaufort West three times in the past 15 years. He was sacked on the last occasion after paying himself a R49 000 performance bonus.

Beaufort West has one of the highest unemployment and poverty rates in the country.

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